Mary Alice Bowden Lyman

Mary Alice Bowden Lyman 1932 – 2020 ORR’S ISLAND – Mary Alice “MA” Bowden Lyman, 87, of Orr’s Island, died at home surrounded by family on Tuesday, August 4, 2020. She was born on September 19, 1932 in Irvington, New York the daughter of Burnham Bowden and Margaret (Peg) Bowden. She majored in mathematics at Vassar College and continued her studies at Harvard Graduate School where she was the first woman to be accepted into the program. It was there that she met her Canadian (and a former naval officer) husband Robert (Bob) Lyman, a rising philatelist. They were married in 1957 and spent their honeymoon travelling throughout Europe as Bob grew his rare postage stamp business. They continued this love of travel throughout their 55 years of marriage. MA began her marriage in Marblehead, Massachusetts and then moved with Bob and their children Mark, John and Anne to Irvington, New York. MA was a life- long advocate for the rights of women and children having served on the board of St. Faith’s House Foundation in nearby Tarrytown, N.Y., which gave grants to homeless children, pregnancy prevention programs for at-risk teens and tuition assistance for day care. She was also on the board of the Junior Leagues and the Thursday Club, founded in 1921 under the premise that friends working together with focus and compassion can improve the world around them. Her love of gardening led her to be a member of the Garden Club of America. In 1978 she and Bob built their house on Orr’s Island and in 2015, having spent many happy summers there, she became a full time resident. Her commitment to community building brought her to be a beloved member of the Mingo Club preserving Library Hall on Bailey Island, a historic building listed on the National Registry of Historic Places and used for the benefit of the community and a sponsor of public education . Having spent her whole life on boats, nothing gave her more pleasure this Spring than one last sail with two of her grandchildren, her son and daughter-in-law on his boat. MA is survived by her sisters, Betsy and Molly, three children and four grandchildren, Nicolas, Jonathan, Olivia and Abigail. A celebration of life will be held in memory of MA next June. Condolences may be expressed at In Mary Alice’s memory donations may be made to Chan’s Home Health and Hospice of Brunswick.

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